Mark Steyn a candidate for US Senate?
On his radio show on Thursday night, conservative talk show host Hugh Hewitt lobbied National Review columnist and occasional fill-in host for Rush Limbaugh to make a run for a New Hampshire U.S. Senate seat against the current incumbent, Democrat Sen. Jeanne Shaheen.
Hewitt on Friday had announced the launch of SteynforSenate.com, where one can sign a petition to encourage him to run as well as be notified how to contribute to his campaign in the event he does run.
But in his regular appearance on Thursday, Steyn expressed his disappointment in the lack of the quality of candidates considering a run for the seat, but he didn’t entirely rule it out either.
“[M]y heart sank somewhat when I read in the Union Leader, I think it was the other day, about those who were preparing to run against Jeanne Shaheen for U.S. Senate seat,” Steyn wrote. “And I wish this state was the way it was 20 years ago, but the New Hampshire Republican Party was too often was content to be in office rather than in power. That’s a problem with the Republican Party generally, I feel. And suddenly I regret that Jeanne Shaheen was able to defeat John Sununu six years ago and I will take yours advice having just given my Palmerstonian speech, I’m not sure that’s something Granite Staters are ready for.”
Steyn noted the difficulty of running as a writer, having in one way or another offended the sensibilities of potential voters. But he also pointed out that it was something London Mayor Boris Johnson had been able to overcome, having been a journalist and the editor of The Spectator.
“One of the great things about running — about writers running is they have hostages to fortune at least, they’re the people least suited to run for office in the United States because they don’t just have one damaging quote for somebody you know like that fellow [Todd] Akin or whatever it is. There’s like half a century terrible quotes where the writer runs.”
Steyn mocked his own eligibility, having been born in Canada.
“I don’t know whether I should aim a little higher,” he added. “I don’t know whether I could dust off my Hawaiian birth certificate and just run straight for President. I might as well. Everybody else, everybody else Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio has some sort of incipient birther problem with the 2016 campaign. So I might as well just throw my hat in that one as well.”
But there have been some questions as to whether or not Steyn would be constitutionally eligible for a run. Article I, Section 3 of the U.S. Constitution states one must be at least 30 years of age, a resident of the state they would be representing and a U.S. citizen for no less the nine years. But according to Hewitt, the 17th Amendment eviscerates all those requirements and leaves it solely in the hands of the voters.
“The 17th Amendment comes along and says nothing about that,” Hewitt said on his Friday program. “It just says the senator shall be directly elected.”